Since the wedding a few of my friends have asked me what I learned and what pointers I could give them for their weddings. Here are a few things that I realized at the wedding that I didn't think too much about before hand. If you're getting married soon, you may want to take notes.
1. flip flops are a must! I had 4 water blisters on my feet from my shoes. Of course I didn't realize it that night, but the next morning they hurt. And if you do get water blisters, just pop them with a pin and squeeze out the water, it's painless cause the skin is dead already. Then put on a bandaid. That should take most of the pain away.
2. make sure your emergency kit is well stocked with large and small safety pins (large ones were key for me), bandaids, straws, razor, straight pins, powder, lipstick, crochet hooks, etc. I won't go fully into mine right now, but take a look at the many examples online.
3. make sure they put plenty of tacks in your dress for bustling. The seamstress will tell you only "x" number are needed, but that's for a typical wedding, where people aren't dancing their ass off. Granted, my dress was lace, but the first time someone stepped on the dress the lace got pulled out of the buttons and the bustle fell out in no time. I would ask for at least 3 more than what she recommends and/or make sure she really really re-enforces the tacks. When all else fails use large safety pins (see point 2)
4. also regarding the bustle, make sure none of is dragging on the ground. when she did mine, she left some dragging so it still looked like a mini-train. This looks nice but is terrible for dancing. I tripped on my own dress a few times and the bottom was completely black by the end of the night. You want it all off the ground if you plan on dancing a lot.
5. something will go wrong, and it will be okay. the two big things that went wrong on my wedding day were, 1 - the caterer didn't get all the food out fast enough. and 2 - they ran out of lime juice. This was the most problematic because they started serving straight tequila. Even though I went and yelled at the caterer, there was nothing that could be done until more juice got there. Oh yea, and I also lost a side diamond out of my engagement ring 2 hours before the wedding. But my dad got it fixed! Like I said, something will go wrong. Try to laugh it off.... Try.
6. make sure there is one person who is responsible for getting the groom to the wedding and that person is not responsible for anyone else. Because my soon-to-be husbands family was sharing cars, his brother had to take him and his cousin and one of his other groomsmen to the wedding. Of course running around and getting everyone coordinated meant that he got there later than he wanted and missed having the photographer get more than like one or two pictures of him getting ready. Plus, you don't need that stress!
7. if you think your dress may fall down in the front, use Curvana tape. it may leave a slight rash on your skin by the end of the night, but my rash went away in like 2 days. That stuff is sticky! If you do use it, put it on the dress the night before and create yourself a peel tab to quickly pull the back off to stick it to yourself. In fact, just try it before hand and you'll see its kinda a pain to use, but it works really well. You can get it at Michaels and yes they have it, so don't let them tell you that they don't, because I found that the people there just didn't know what it was. It's in a red tape dispenser.
8. make sure you eat! I went to the grocery store the day before and got a finger sandwiches plate and a fruit plate to take in the limo and to the hair stylist. Just before I got my makeup done I brushed my teeth and stopped eating (though I did have some cucumbers and water at the venue). Also, bring a straw for once your lipstick is done and you want some water. You can bring touchup makeup if you want, but I found that I just forgot to us it! And the lipstick really stayed well the whole time I cared about. Really after pictures you stop caring anyway. The only thing that I used a few time was this white powder to take the sweat glare away. I had my dad hold that for me since he had pockets. I also used it on him! :)
9. Relax! I think we started about 15 minutes late, and it was okay! I was even ready before that. Take your time to really take it all in. I took some time to peer out the window and watch people sign the guest book. It was fun.
10. Even though I had a copy of the photos that I wanted, I was instantly relaxed to see my photographers assistant holding his copy that I had emailed them earlier in the week. Make sure your photographer has a "must take" list and give it to a friend if you don't see them carrying it around. It was nice to have all the pictures that I wanted written down, because you will forget. And at some point you'll just be so pre occupied that you'll say "oh I don't care." I did that once and the photographer looked at me and said "really?!?!?" and then I was like "yea, you're right, lets take that one."
11. speaking of photos, take the time to take the ones that you want. at the end of the night the photographer grabbed us and said "lets do some tree shots" We didn't want to leave the party but we did and they are some of the best shots of the night. We were really happy that we took them. When we got back to the dance floor, my friend who is recently married said to me "I wish we would have taken more pictures, you'll be happy you did that" And I am! I think it took us about 1 hour after the ceremony for pictures and then maybe another 20 minutes during the reception. You won't miss much but you'll be happy to have that time just the two of you (well and the photographer/videographer). We missed the cocktail hour, but I think most brides do.
12. have a list of everything that needs to leave and possible people who can take it. it's hard to have a list of exactly who should have what, so I would just be simple. Here are the 20 things that have to leave, here are 5 people who can take them.
13. have a good 'day of person' who can make sure everything is running smoothly. Lauren, my coordinator, was great. She didn't interrupt anything but she found lulls to make sure we did the cake and the bouquet toss. We also did the toasts first to get them out of the way. Even though I'm sure 1/2 the people didn't even hear, but that's okay.
14. Have fun. Make sure to say quick "hello" to people but then let them come to you on the dance floor, they will! Everyone says "oh you wont get to eat, you won't get to dance." Well I ate, and I danced and I let people come to me. I remember the whole night because I was on my schedule and didn't feel like I was under pressure to say "hi" to everyone right away. People understand that it is your wedding. Also, having a sweetheart table to put your food and drinks and purse and bouquet on is nice.
Hope this helps you brides out there have the most awesome wedding ever... just like I did!